Political map of South American nations 17 January 1903 (Second Venezuela Crisis): Following Venezuela's refusal to pay its foreign debts, Britain, Germany, and Italy blockaded the country in late 1902, seizing most of the Venezuelan navy (Venezuela Crisis of 1902-03). The United States at first accepted this action but was antagonized when the Germans escalated the intervention by bombarding Fort San Carlos (Bombardment of Fort San Carlos). Under US pressure, the two sides agreed to a compromise and the Europeans withdrew.